Author Archives: Dr. Pascale Michelon

The Right Amount of Sleep for a Healthy Brain

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

We have all experienced the impact of a short night’s sleep on our brain the day after. Similarly, a disrupted sleep pattern is one of the factors that affect cognitive functions as we age. But is it sleep duration or quality that matters? And how many hours of sleep does one need to function optimally after 50? Continue reading

Early Fitness Predicts Better Memory in Middle-Age

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

At 50, some people have a better memory than others and experience less cognitive fog. Lifestyle factors may play a role in this variability. Specifically, physical fitness at 25 could predict memory performance in middle-age: the fitter, the better the memory. Continue reading

Could Antidepressants Be Used to Slow Alzheimer Disease?

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

Anti-depressants ‘could slow onset of Alzheimer’s disease’ (BBC): Research into 23 people, and transgenic mice, found citalopram hampered a protein which helps to build destructive plaques in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. Scientists said they hoped the study could help prevent the disease.

How many hopeful titles like this one have you read recently in the media? Scientific results tend to get in the news very fast these days, especially as far as Alzheimer’s disease is concerned. Often, the research is only beginning and patients and their family should learn to be critical readers. Continue reading

People with More Education Recover Better From Traumatic Brain Injury

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

Educated people appear to recover better from a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). This suggests that education helps protect the brain. Continue reading

Are women more likely to develop Alzheimer’s?

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

In the US, two-third of the people diagnosed with the disease are women. The reason why is not clear so far. Of course, women are more likely than men to live long enough to develop the disease.  But there may be other factors such as a gene (APOE4) or the hormone estrogen. This NPR story helps us understand this a little bit better. Continue reading

12 Weeks of Brain Training Enhances Brain Health in Adults

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

Brain training can improve performance by physically changing the brain. A recent study observed such changes in adults: only 12 weeks of brain training increased blood flow and enhanced functional and physical communication across brain regions. These changes were related to improved abstract thinking. Continue reading

Physical Fitness Boosts Kids’ Memory

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

Being physically fit is among the most relevant factors as far as brain health and performance is concerned. This is true at all ages. A new study further shows the importance of physical fitness in kids, demonstrating its beneficial effects on memory. Continue reading

Bilingualism Delays Dementia By 4.5 Years

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

Being bilingual protects against dementia, delaying its onset. A new study shows that this is true for all types of dementia and interestingly, whether you can read or not. Speaking a second language is what matters and not so much your level of education. Continue reading

A Video Game to Reverse the Effects of Age on Multitasking

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

Multitasking happens all the time, whether it is at home, school or work. It is never easy to do several things at once and this doesn’t get easier as we get older. Are there any ways to overcome such difficulties? Training the brain may be one. Playing a video game that train cognitive control seems to reverse the effects of age on multitasking. Continue reading

How to Improve Memory

By: Dr. Pascale Michelon

Lifelong mental stimulation is linked to better memory in later life. What about using a computerized brain training? Does it work? Is it enough? What else can be done to maintain memory through life? A new study adds evidence to the debate. Continue reading